The Hunter Crew

700TH (lead) SQUADRON


After surviving a crash landing in France on 27 September of that year, the crew would be transferred to the 389th BG next door and would go down in March of 1945. All would perish. Especially of interest is the account, below, of Thomas Spera, who rode as an observer on the Kassel Mission.


Lead Element


B-24H  #42-94810  "Terrible Terry's Terror"  Call Letter J+ (Jig)

Crash-landed 12 Km East of Lille, France

Terrible Terry's Terror, named for the 445th's original commander, Colonel Terrill, is swarmed by French citizens, after crash landed in newly liberated France. At the time of the Kassel Mission, American fliers and their planes were rock stars. See French Crew tail gunner Herb Schwartz's diary for a similar tale. French's plane also crash landed in France. 


rank    name                        position                      outcome

1st Lt.    Hunter, William F.          Pilot                                    Returned to Duty 

2nd Lt.  Ferryman, Lee D.          Copilot                                Returned to Duty

2nd Lt.  Keams, Robert H.          Navigator                           Returned to Duty

2nd Lt.  Smith, George E.           Bombardier                        Returned to Duty

S/Sgt     Spera Thomas  G          Photographer/Observer   Returned to Duty

S/Sgt     Ratchford Robert H       Engineer                            Returned to Duty

S/Sgt     Monzingo Jake S          Radio Operator                  Returned to Duty

S/Sgt     Cannon Robert  J          Waist Gunner                     Returned to Duty

Sgt         Selser Joseph A           Waist Gunner                     Returned to Duty

Sgt         Sarber Robert W           Top Turret Gunner            Returned to Duty

S/Sgt      Schaffer Fred C            Tail Gunner                        Returned to Duty

accounts and gallery

Many crews flew this ship before it finally went down in September of 1944.

Captain Ehart and Allen in the right seat. Note on photo by Wayne Allen says that 10 minutes after this photo was taken, they were buzzing the airfield while the commanding officer (Col. Terrill) was away from the base.